UN General Assembly: Sushma Swaraj meets Ivanka Trump, discuss entrepreneurship

Union Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj met Donald Trump’s daughter and advisor Ivanka Trump on Tuesday at the United Nations General Assembly. The two ladies were seen bonding and discussing women entrepreneurship and workforce development in the two nations.

Ivanka will head the American delegation to the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES). The United States of America and India will co-host the GES, to be held in Hydrabad from November 28 to November 30, 2017.

The GES will be a global platform for all the upcoming entrepreneurs, seed capitalists, Venture capitalists, investors and business moguls from across the world, to meet and exchange ideas. Not only it will facilitate easy business operations for aspiring entrepreneurs but also provide impetus to the Indian entrepreneurship sector.

After the meeting, Ivanka took to Twitter to praise Sushma Swaraj and call her a ‘Charismatic’ foreign minister. She further tweeted, “We had a great discussion on women’s entrepreneurship, the upcoming #GES2017 and workforce development in the US and India.”

Once done with her global address on September, Swaraj is expected to arrive in India. During her week-long stay, the minister is expected to hold around 20 bilateral and trilateral meetings with other members of the summit.

Sources: NDTV, Economic Times

Image Source: Twitter/@IndianembassyUS official

Alcohol consumption in public to be banned in Goa: Manohar Parrikar

Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Sunday said that the State government has decided to ban alcohol consumption in public spaces. The liquor shops flouting the rules will be penalized. The decision is taken to curb drunken shenanigans of people.

“If someone wants to drink (liquor), they should drink inside and not in public places. In the next 15 days, I will hold meetings with government officials to ban the consumption of liquor at public places,” Parrikar said at a ‘Swachch Bharat’ function.

Apart from this, the government will impose hefty fines or even cancel licences of shops which allow people to drink in their vicinity. The police crackdown has already started this year in May.

The government, last year amended the excise duty act, 1964 that penalizes people caught drinking in public places. It is identified as ‘No Alcohol Consumption Zones’ and on beaches. The amendments to the excise act will done next month. The government is currently governing liquor licences of the shops under the Daman and Diu Excise Act, 1964.

He also added the govt further intends to make helmets for to-wheelers compulsory.

Sources: Times of India, Economic Times

Image Source: India Today

Assam BJP muslim woman leader suspended for supporting Rohingya refugees

A muslim woman executive of Bhartiya Janta Party’s state majdoor morcha in Assam was expelled from the party on Sunday over her Facebook post that supported Rohingya muslim refugees. The evicted Benazir Arfan claimed to have been arbitrarily suspended without getting a chance to explain herself.

According to Indian Express, Dilip Saikia, General Secretary of the Assam state BJP unit said, “Benazir Arfan has been expelled after she failed to give any satisfactory reply to the show cause notice she was served last Thursday on why disciplinary action should not be taken against her for organizing a rally over the Rohingya Muslim issue in Guwahati without bringing the matter to the party forum.”

Arfan, in her post, she urged people to participate in the fast that protested the treatment given to the Rohingya muslims by Myanmar. She clarified her stand stating that her choice of words were misinterpreted and termed her expulsion an ‘insult’ to her loyalty towards the party.

She declared that she will take up the matter to the higher authorities. Rebuffing her claims, Saikia added that it is not for the first time she is flouting the party rules but has previously raised issues on inappropriate social forums.

Arfan had previously been BJP’s face in anti- triple talaq campaign in Assam.

Sources: DNA, Indian Express

Image Source: Facebook/ Benazir Arfan

Purushottam Karandak: NACSC, Ahemdnagar emerges winner

Purushottam Karandak, Pune’s largest theater festival for the youth finally came to end on Wednesday. In a one-of-a-kind feat, the New Arts, Commerce and Science College, Ahmednagar pipped Pune’s Sir Parshurambhau (SP) College, four-time winner of Purushottam Karandak in the final round, creating history. The winning play Mic talked about the power of unity and common goals, and its eventual exploitation due to personal motives of individuals.

Karandak festival is an event started by Datye in 1963, in the memory of Late Mr Purushottam Ramachandra also known as Appasaheb Vaze. It it is a confluence of budding talent and passion of upcoming student/ theatre actors along with the age-old experiences of theatre veterans.

Pune’s Modern Engineering College secured the second place and procured the Hari Vinayak Karandak award for their play ASL (Age, Sex, Location) Please, which dealt with conversations with strangers. Sanjeev Karandak, which is the third place was won by Pune’s Brihan Maharashtra College of Commerce (BMCC) for their play Sorry Paranjpe whose theme revolved around the removal of Ram Ganesh Gadkari’s statue in Pune.

“Our hard work seems to have paid off. We are feeling very confident now,”  Krushna Walke who was part of the 16-member winning team told Times of India in an interview. “In the play, we showed how a stage was built by people hailing from different backgrounds who come together for a common cause. However, when there was a mic placed on the stage it is exploited to feed the biases of few. All it results into is cacophony,” he added.

This year’s festival started on August 8 at the Bharat Natya Mandir. In the previous year, Sir Parshurambhau (SP) College of Pune won the title for the fourth time, a feat never achieved by any other college in the history.




‘It’ Movie Review: Watch It, Fear It

Cast: Jaeden Lieberher, Bill Skarsgard, Sophia Lillis, Finn Wolfhard, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Chosen Jacobs, Jack Dylan Grazer
Duration: 2 hours 15 min
Genre:  Horror
Rating: 3.5/5

Thirty one long years ago, Stephen King published his novel ‘It’ never thinking that years down the line, it will be one of the feared and best horror work witnessed in a long time. Hollywood revisits the old classic and presents us with a movie with the same twisted, evil and horror elements intact.

Coulrophobia- the fear of clowns is a strange yet commonly found phobia. Some have it or some might acquire it after watching the film. The story, set in the backdrop of Derry, a small town in Maine is about a bunch of school kids labelled as ‘The Losers’ Club’, who encounter some spooky incidents which makes them aware about the presence of a murderous supernatural entity. The hide and seek game continues until they finally come face-to-face with the dreary spirit which is none other than a scary clown, who returns every 27 years to exploit on children’s fears. The kids, with their share of fears, bullying troubles and overbearing parents become the target of It who grimly haunts them.

The extremely popular scene of the paper boat swiftly floating towards an old sewer, little Georgie chasing it and a mysterious cloud popping up from the drainage and the eerie dialogue between the two serves as the beginning of the film. Not only the scene sends shivers down our spine but the dialogues like ‘I am the Pennywise dancing clown’ and ‘You’ll float too’ set up the mood for the film. The film does a great job of maintaining anticipation that anything dreadful can happen to any of the kids.

The plot, midway falls on loose tracks and it is unclear why the monster or ‘IT’ targets only seven kids or why does it appear randomly every 27 years. As for the acting, kudos to the talented bunch of kids do a great job and Jaeden Lieberher who does justice to his creepy role. The effortless acting makes up for the few plot-holes the film witnesses.

The quaint American culture, costumes, craftsman houses makes it very evitable that the setting is of some American town. As far as the look of the clown is concerned, the grotesque appearance with hypnotic eyes, red evil grin, strange mannerism, everything captures the evilness perfectly. The cinematography with a balance of long and medium shots as well as the visual effects along with the apt musical score in the background gave brownie points to the movie. Lastly, the red balloon becomes the ultimate essence of fears and horror combined. Love horror- Watch It! Fear horror- yet don’t ignore It!



Another Voice stifled: Senior Journalist Gauri Lankesh Shot dead at Bengaluru residence

Prominent Journalist and activist Gauri Lankesh was shot dead by  three unidentified assailants while she was entering her house in Rajarajeshwari Nagar around 8pm on September 5.

According to M.N. Anucheth, DCP (West), her body was found on the verandah of her house. The neighbours said that they heard multiple shots being fired at her after which she collapsed and died on the spot.

Lankesh was the editor of weekly Kannada bulletin- Lankesh Patrike. She is well-known for her critical acclaimed work that often lambasted Hindutva extremism, caste system and the current government. She had come under fire previously for her criticism against Sangh parivar.

The Press club has strongly condemned the murder and thousands of people including prominent journalists like Sagarika Ghose, Rajdeep Sardesai etc have gathered to protest the rise in violence against journalists for speaking their minds.

Several politicians have to social media to express their shock and angst over the killing. BJP State Chief BS Yeddyurappa, terming the murder ‘inhuman’ and ‘barbaric’ tweeted that the law and order situation in the state has completely collapsed.

Investigations are on but the police is yet to check the footage from CCTV installed on her porch. Her funeral will be conducted as per the Lingayat customs.

Lankesh, an agnostic, was a fiesty, independent voice of journalism that has been silenced with bullets.

Sources: The Hindu, The Wire

Image Source: Facebook- Official page of Gauri Lankesh

Reckitt Benckiser crisis: Four Senior Executives quit

Four senior executives of Reckitt Benckiser, a British consumer product group leave the organisation while the company grapples with different challenges for quite some time. The group has touched rock bottom and has recorded weakest performance in history after a failed product launch and a safety scandal in South Korea that led to a dwindled business.

The Vice President of information services Darrell Stein will leave on October 1 and immediately be replaced by Seth Cohen. Stein’s departure was speculated after Reckitt faced a cyber-attack that shook its safety foundation, global operations and cost it around 100 million pounds of sales.

Other executives who will quit by the year-end to explore other professional opportunities include Deborah Yates, senior Human Resource Head, Roberto Funari, Executive Vice President of category development and Frederic Larmuseau, head of developing markets who will take reins of Jacobs Douwe Egberts, a coffee business.

The exodus came after Reckitt intergrated Mead Johnson, its biggest takeover bid. The company in a statement said that RB is upbeat about its change in portfolio priorities and operating policies and will continue to be leader in consumer health products.

The news led to sudden decline in the share price of the organisation by 1.1% at 0815 GMT. Benckiser group is the maker of popular products such as Lysol cleaner, Dettol soap and hand-washes, Durex condoms, Vanish, Harpic toilet cleaners etc.

Sources: Reuters, Bloomberg

Image Source: Financial Times